lava was born in Spanish Harlem in 1953 to a mother and father who came from Carolina Puerto Rico which is the home of the famous Base Ball player ROBERTO CLEMENTE. Many thought he was just a light skin black dude or what they referred to many brothers back then as “High Yellow.” But he Boricua from uptown Manhattan. he began writing with his brother KOOL BREEZE in 1970 or the early part of 1971. they both love hitting the buses and walls, it is what many writers did back then, guys like CAY 161, JUNIOR 161, TAKI 183, JOE 182, TONY184, EDDIE 181, COOL CLIFF 120, C.A.T.-87, HILT 505, CENTURY 120, JOCKEY 1, MAJOR 120, CLANCY 120, HULK 62, EDDIE 181, WEB 1&2, JEE 126, CAR 54 and BORICUA 1(from the Broadway line) Were dudes they saw hitting the streets and buses before moving over to subway cars.
Lava started his writing career in Spanish Harlem under the name STRAIGHT MAN or sometimes SM for short. In the 1960's and early 1970's the Outlaw Street gangs were a way of life in New York city and Lava was a big part of that, becoming division leader of one of the most feared but respected gangs of New York city ( The Back Spades ) in the early 70's. Under the name Straight man he would become a very well know writer on the Buses and streets, writing with the likes of early single hit ( Taggers) kings : COOL CLIFF 120, HILT 505, PIPER 1 and JACE 2, until moving on to the Subways. Lava would later make his name big on the Bronx and Brooklyn lines and join forces with some the biggest writing groups of the time, The I.N.D'S ( THE INDEPENDENTS ), T.E.D-INC ( THE EBONY DUKES ) and Brooklyn's elite groups the EX/VANDALS and W.A.R ( WRITERS ARE RESPECTED ). These alliances would help Lava to become a very big City wide writers on the I.R.T's, B.M.T's and I.N.D's. During the early generation of Master pieces he would play a big part in the evolution, painting with the likes of PHASE2, LIONEL 168, STAFF 161 and TRACY 168. There are many Subway Kings left out of History, Here is his story.